The fashion of the 70s was certainly different from that of any other decade.
Colors were brighter, prints were bolder, and fabrics even felt different.
Take a look back at some of the classic television shows of the 1970s - like The Brady Bunch, Starsky and Hutch, and others - and you can see great examples of the most popular fads of the era.
70s Bell Bottom Pants
Pants, for example, were quite unique during the 70s. At the beginning of the decade, bell bottoms were king. Anyone under age 40 – and plenty of others over that age – wore bell bottoms.
Bell bottom jeans were especially popular. They ranged from slightly flared to really, really wide. These widest of bell bottoms were called “elephant bells.” For many people, the wider the bell bottoms the better and it wasn’t unusual for wearers to add fabric to the bottom of the pants to make them wider.
Bell bottoms were not for jeans only. For women, other casual pants as well as dress pants were also flared at the bottom.
Later on in the decade, when leisure suits were popular for men, the pants that were included with those suits were also bell bottom in style. You’d also find flared pants with the three-piece suits that were so popular during the disco era.
70s Polyester Pants
In the 1970s, synthetic fabrics were extremely popular, including nylon and polyester. Housewives liked polyester because any clothes made of this fabric were easy to care for, requiring no ironing. They would come out of the dryer ready to wear!
Polyester pants were all the rage in the 70s, especially for men. Most had a slightly flared bottom and they were available in a variety of patterns, including plaids, checks, patchwork, and a number of other interesting fabrics.
Most accommodated the wide belts that were so popular during the decade. You could buy them just about everywhere – from Sears and K-Mart to upscale department stores like Macy’s.
Women wore polyester pants, too. Chances are they were sky blue, baby pink, or another pastel, or a pattern that was not unlike those offered for men’s polyester pants.
Bottoms were probably flared though straight-leg pants became popular towards the end of the decade.
In the 1970s, both jeans and dress pants came in a hip hugger style. Hip huggers were pants that sat below the natural waistline.
They were available for both sexes. Women often paired them with midriff tops that tied just below the breasts, a look that was considered quite sexy in the 70s.
To accessorize the hip hugger pants, wearers added macramé belts.